November 14, 2012

The healthiest state in the United States for 2011 was Vermont, which has consistently moved up the rankings every year since 1998, when it ranked number 17. Which state was number two in 2011? That would be New Hampshire, which moved up from number 3 in 2010. New Hampshire consistently ranks in the top ten healthiest states in the United States. Connecticut occupies the enviable number three spot, followed by Hawaii and then Massachusetts.

The unhealthiest states in the United States for 2011 were Mississippi (for the tenth year in a row), followed in order by Louisiana, Oklahoma, Arkansas, and Alabama.

U.S. Health Statistics

Just under half of all U.S. adults live with at least one chronic medical condition. Chronic medical conditions are responsible for seven out of ten adult deaths in the U.S.  Approximately 865,000 U.S. adults died during 2011 from cardiovascular disease (the number one cause of death in the United States) and almost 600,000 died from cancer. The annual costs associated with cardiovascular disease in the U.S. are estimated to be $273 billion in direct costs and $444 billion in overall costs — cancer costs are over $263 billion.

Prevention efforts offer the best hope for reducing health care costs, increasing worker productivity, and decreasing mortality rates. The National Prevention Strategy identified the following seven priority areas focused on the leading causes of preventable death and major illnesses in the U.S.:  tobacco-free living (tobacco use is the leading preventable cause of death in the United States, accounting for more than 440,000 deaths in the U. S., and 46 million Americans still smoke at a cost of almost $200 billion each year in medical expenses and lost productivity); preventing drug abuse and excessive alcohol use; healthy eating (obesity rates have doubled for adults and tripled for children in the U.S. since the 1960s  — more than 1 in 3 adults and 1 in 6 children are now obese; there are about one thousand outbreaks of food borne illnesses in the U.S. each year that cause 1 in 6 Americans to become sick and kills 3,000 people, at a cost of $152 billion in medical expenses and lost productivity); active living; injury and violence-free living (motor vehicle accidents result in more than 33,000 deaths in the U.S. each year, at a cost of $41 billion in medical expenses and lost productivity, and sending more than 4 million Americans to emergency departments — motor vehicle accidents are the leading cause of death for Americans between the ages of 5 and 34; healthcare-associated infection (“HAI”) affect approximately 1 in 20 hospitalized patients, killing 100,000 Americans, at a cost of about $30 billion each year — at least one-third of HAIs are easily preventable with simple techniques); reproductive and sexual health (there are more than 50,000 newly HIV-infected Americans each year, in addition to the one million already living with HIV, with rates increasing among younger men who have sex with men; more than 400,000 teenage girls in the U.S. between the ages of 15 and 19 give birth each year); and mental and emotional well-being.


If you or a loved one have been injured by possible medical malpractice in the United States, you owe it to yourself and to your family to contact a local medical malpractice attorney to investigate whether you can bring a medical malpractice claim for the harms that you suffered.

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